Sexuality and Romantic Love
Sexuality and Romantic Love
Romantic love is almost always accompanied by intense sexual desire. Both partners become ravenous for the other and their lovemaking is often more passionate, ecstatic and intimate than any previous sexual encounter. This new and exciting level of passion is one of the wonderful gifts of romantic love and, if properly nurtured, can be sustained and even increase in intensity for years or longer.
The sexual passion of romantic love lowers personal boundaries and invites an increasing deepening of intimacy. Sex and intimacy become partners in the couple's lovemaking and each contributes to the other. The power of lust mixed with the even greater power of romantic love, drives both lovers to drop all pretense and strip away, not only all their physical clothing but also all emotional and spiritual defenses. Romantic passion demands nakedness on all levels and each lover learns to revel in the freedom it offers.
Romantic passion also demands exploration. Each lover wants desperately to explore the body and the heart of the other as if it is a wondrous, unknown and mysterious territory. Just as each want to know the other in preciously intimate detail, each also aches to be touched and heard and seen and felt by this one who has become the most desirable being in all existence.
Sexual encounter in the context of romantic love can thus be a doorway or a path to radical intimacy. It provides a physical and emotional intensity that overcomes the rigid defenses that usually block access to each partner's inner being. When these defenses drop in the midst of lovemaking, lovers can enter their partner's holiest inner sanctum and know and be known at a depth that is completely unavailable to any other person. This creates a sacred connection and an almost indescribable experience of loving, healing ecstasy and bliss.
Most romantically involved couples approach the doorway to this deeper connection. They glimpse what is beyond and then one or both turn away. They know that something more awaits, something that could be incredibly wonderful and life changing. But they stop, turn away and settle. This settling leads then to sameness and that sameness leads to a lessening of intimacy and intensity and eventually their lovemaking becomes simply sex and too often a form of mutual masturbation bereft of romance.
Romantic love and its passionate sexuality do not have to come to this sad end. It can be sustained and it can deepen and expand. If both partners, both lovers, are willing to pass through the doorway I described above. It takes courage, certain learnable skills, maturity and commitment and a willingness to surrender to love, of course, but the treasure to be found is greater than words can describe. Romantic love always opens the door and invites every lover to enter. It is up to us what happens next.
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